Imagine Magazine - Johns Hopkins - May/June 2014 - (Page 40)

one step ahead Choosing Art by grace Kubilius active place for it in the world, and that i could be a part of it if i wanted to. toward the end of my junior year, i decided that i wanted to go to art school for college. now, in addition to grades, essays, and aCt scores, i was faced with the task of putting together a portfolio. i didn't know anyone who had gone to art school, so i asked my high school art teacher for advice on where to begin. he encouraged CARRie ANN kelly i never anticipated having to decide between an art school and a university. most of my life, i focused my attention on academics and expressed my creativity through craft projects like knitting, jewelry making, and putting together really extravagant birthday cards. i constantly wanted to make, but i never considered making art. Upon entering high school, i found myself overwhelmed by a rigorous academic schedule. i was endlessly doing schoolwork and studying and continually feeling anxious and stressed. i found that being creative in even the smallest of ways provided an outlet for my nervous energy. i started going to thrift and antique stores, looking for things i could "mess with"-the term i had started using for altering inexpensive clothes my mom wouldn't care if i ruined. i started teaching myself to sew and became obsessed with making jewelry. as my interest in fashion grew, my parents suggested i take a fashion Construction class at the school of the art institute of Chicago (saiC) in the hope that i would stop trying to make pillowcases into dresses. after a couple of initial fashion classes, i enrolled in various drawing and painting courses. Because saiC is a specialized art institution, i was exposed to a large variety of media, way beyond the basics offered at my high school. additionally, i experienced being part of a community of people my age with similar interests. i felt comfortable, accepted, encouraged to be myself, and excited to participate. after a six-hour studio class, exhausted but happy, i wanted to keep working-it was nothing like the draining experience of my academic classes. more than that, i was finally seeing that art was important and valued, that there was an me to enroll in advanced Placement studio art and as many art classes as i could- both at school and at saiC. i adjusted my schedule and took fewer aP courses, settled for a well-above-average-but-notgenius aCt score, and did my best to work on my portfolio while keeping my grades up. in developing a body of artwork, i also entered competitions and shows through my high school, receiving some recognition and building my exhibition list. in the fall of my senior year, i attended national Portfolio day at saiC, a day when students could meet with representatives from art schools all over the U.s. Like many of the other potential students, i brought my portfolio and asked for feedback and ways to improve so that i would be a more desirable applicant. a couple of weeks later, i had another portfolio review with a professor from dePaul University, who told me that if i decided to go there or to any other fine arts program at a large university, i would be a big fish in a small pond. i realized that if i went to an academic university, i would be part of a smaller arts program, but the program may not be as competitive or have the same studio facilities and tools. i knew i didn't want that; i wanted to be in a school focused entirely on art, with programs built on various aspects of arts like sculpture, environmental design, and painting. i wanted to be an artist, and i felt it was important to be around individuals who shared my goal. i applied to 10 schools in total: nine art schools and one university. i was accepted to all 10 with both academic and merit scholarships. after narrowing my choices to Pratt, Parsons, and the maryland institute College of art (miCa), i toured each of the campuses. miCa immediately felt like the right fit. there was such a feeling of community, students seemed thoughtful and engaged, and the faculty really cared about their students. Last year, i graduated from miCa with a Bfa in fiber art. i definitely did not have a typical college experience, and i have never worked so hard, but i have absolutely no regrets about my decision. Grace Kubilius completed a residency at pyramid Atlantic Art Center in Washington, dC, this past winter. She is currently working in Chicago on visual displays for Anthropologie and also teaches young children at a Craft Studio. Beginning in June, grace will be a fiber artist-in-residence at the Craft Alliance in St. louis, mo, where she will also be teaching. grace maintains a strong studio practice and continues to make her own work. Visit to see more of grace Kubilius's work. 40 imagine may/Jun 2014

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Imagine Magazine - Johns Hopkins - May/June 2014

Big Picture
In My Own Words
Imagine, Design, Build
A Schematic of the Possible
My Life as an Architect
Blueprint for the Future
DesertSol: A Model of Sustainability
Across Space and Time
The Art of Summer
Selected Opportunities & Resources
A Digital Canvas
Rising to the Technovation Challenge
Off the Shelf
Word Wise
Exploring Career Options
One Step Ahead
Planning Ahead for College
Students Review
Creative Minds Imagine
Mark Your Calendar
Knossos Games

Imagine Magazine - Johns Hopkins - May/June 2014